Saturday, August 30, 2008


Well, still waiting on news....any news.. I did find out that my questions and request for current height/weight and updated pictures has been made. Now if I could convince those lovely women in the foster system in China to take anywhere from 5-600 photos of our girl...than well, that would make me a happy camper. I am kind of back to trying to get stuff done and doing the normal day to day stuff. Got to play hockey this morning which is always a great stress reliever ( any women in the Huntsville area interested in playing me!). Tonight we are going to have a few friends over...just to get our minds off the fact that our email Inbox is missing the one email that we really want to get. Other than that, it is just a normal Saturday around here...except for the fact that I have replaced a few of the older photo's of the kids with an adorable Chinese girl who will be hopefully running around the house by Christmas!

Friday, August 29, 2008

It's Friday... One Week Down this counting weeks thing is going to be painful...for everyone. However, I did make a call yesterday and find out that the LOA ( letter of acceptance for those of you having trouble with the acronyms) is not dependent on the PA. The PA just happens to come first. SO... I dont feel bad that the PA didnt come this week...because even if the PA comes next week, the LOA is still in the works. Some adoption agencies don't even issue a there you go.

Still it is about 9pm or so in China which means that Molly is settling in to go to sleep....hopefully. She will have to get accustomed to an 8pm bedtime here. I have talked to so many doctors, audiologists, speech therapists, people working in Children's Rehab and in the school system that it is all running together. We have a jump on our sign language class...thought I was doing good by learning the question words and a list of verbs...then I started watching Four Weddings and a Funeral for the 8,000th time and as most of you may remember Hugh Grants brother is I'm thinking...certainly I can pick up a few signs fact their sign for WHEN is our sign for WHERE...that's all I got. Back to the books.

So I'm off to play some hockey...much needed least for an hour or two. This does get easier, doesn't it?

Thursday, August 28, 2008

The Olympics and the CA.

So... according to the reports out of the CA, they have started to limit the number of families they will see in any one day and because there were no appointments during the Olympics, there has been a little bit of a slow down. Would it have killed everyone to have had the Olympics in Greece again? I mean, they started this whole thing...I think they should own it... I digress.

But before the depression sits in, I was told that there is a good chance that because Rob and I will either travel alone or with one other family that they may be able to squeeze us in to an existing appointment. ( see Mary...this dog is back in the hunt! Man, I really need to move away from Alabama...who says things like that?).

Still ppppaaaaaaitttently waiting for news of picture...hopefully of what she is like. I want to hear more about the obstinate part of her. She will blend in quite nicely to this family. Have found two preschools in the area that have kids with special that gives us some options. Learning sign language and it is coming along quite nicely. I cant imagine speaking in more than one or two words at a time...especially like the sign for HATE. I know that sounds bad...but HATE is a fun sign to make. The sign for LAUGH makes me feel like I belong on the Mickey Mouse club.

Hoping tomorrow brings us more information.... please oh please oh please.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Another Day - No Information

Ugh...I guess no news is good news..or maybe it is just no news. No info on PA, No info on updated height and weight, no questions answered. Even though it will probably be another week to get this info, it doesnt make this any easier. Another adoptive family found out that they couldnt get a CA until October 14. That has been the most disapointing news all day. If adoptions speed up, will CA slow down? You know, I really thought that waiting three years would be the hard part. I was wrong. Knowing that a little girl is half way around the world and could have a family if I could just get to China and bring her home. That is the frustrating part. But there is really nothing else I can do....except wait....

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Another Day - More Information

We are still patiently ...or not so patiently awaiting the answers to our questions from the orphanage. I have about 800 so it was hard to boil it down to just 10. We are also expecting some current height and weight measurements as well as updated photos. Oh how great would that be to get more photos..I have stared holes in the three we have. Plus even complete strangers have asked me to stop showing them our pictures! What I did arrange is to have digital photos sent to molly with our names so that she can start looking at them. This service will put them in a little album for her. They will also send digital cameras so that when you pick her up, you will have pictures of her living day to day in the orphanage. We will also send her some candy and a blanket and a doll or toy.

Spent some time on the phone last night with a man who is married to a deaf woman, has six kids, four that are deaf and two of those kids are adopted from China. He provided some really interesting insight into language and auditory processing as well as what we can expect when we get to China. We are foolishly trying to come up with a game plan prior to getting Molly which is hard to do as everything really depends on her evaluation. But I guess arming yourself with all the information cant hurt!

Attempted to find a local preschool program for that would include deaf luck yet. Right now it is all about early intervention and/ or therapy in the school system. There are still a few phone calls that are due back to me...but the good news is that our insurance ( which is a total nightmare...just ask Dr. Patz) covers not only hearing aids...but CI's as well. So thats good news.

I am starting sign language classes next week. The course will be an intro to ASL and will run 10 weeks. Hopefully it will give me enough of a head start in order to at least attempt some communication with Molly and get her recognizing/ understanding..dare I hope "using" some ASL to communicate. Once that course is over, the next one will be more conversational and my new friend that I spoke to last night is going to try to arrange someone that is deaf to come over to the house so that I can practice speaking in sign.

By the way, a little note to all my hearing friends. Deaf is not a bad word. Deaf is not slang. Deaf does not mean dumb. Deaf does not mean that a person doesnt have auditory processing skills ( yes, that one confused me as well). So if you are reading this and thinking that I should be saying that Molly is hearing impaired and not deaf...well, I was assured last night that would be wrong.
So there is your deaf etiquette for the day!

Off to do some laundry and get something done around the house in an attempt to not think about this every second of the day.

Monday, August 25, 2008

We made the home page!

Well our girl made the home page of my online group for our adoption agency. If I didnt feel "official" before - I do now. I was also told that I have a really good shot of having a pretty quick turn around from LOA to Im going to really be hoping for that! Dont give up yet Mary!

Pictures of Molly's Orphanage

Still attempting to find out exactly what her living situation is...but this is a picture of the Orphange where Molly is. If you look in the front of this picture you will see a curved metal gate. This is where Molly was left to be found when she was 21 months old. I cant even imagine what must have happened where the only recourse for a mother or father was to leave their almost two year old in front of a gate of an orphanage an walk away. The pain that mother or father must have experienced is unimaginable. Well, we will take care of that!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Mystery Solved

Fujian Province. Thats the one near the coast. WHEW! One more crisis diverted.

What's In A Name?

So..imagine live in another country and you want to plan a trip to a major city...ONLY...there are two major city's with the same name. So which one is it? Is it the one that would be easy to get to from where you are flying into or is it the one that would most likely mean a very long bus ride or in country flight. Well - thats where we are.

Molly is at the Children's Welfare Institute of
Fuzhou City. Only we cant find anyplace that is really named that specifically.

There is the Fuzhou City Children's Welfare Institute
in Fuzhou City, Fujian Province AND there is the Fuzhou City Social
Welfare Institute in Jiangxi Province?

So...guess there will be more phone calls tomorrow.

Sign Language Lessons from a 4 year old.

Well apparently my four year old son. has taken all this sign language business rather seriously. He is the self appointed sign language instructor of the family. Everytime I talk to him he has insisted in speaking to me with as many signs as possible. I never thought he would work the signs for Diaper, Monkey, and Juice all in the same sentence. To date, my four year old has taught me more signs that I can repeat in mixed company than my sister, the interpretor.

I did confirm that the consulate appointment is the last thing you do in China which should get us there a week or so AHEAD of whatever CA appoinment we get. But I did find out that the family that appears to moving so quickly is doing so because they had had a failed referral...long they have been expedited. That being said, Im still holding out hope that we will be moving along at a nice pace...and looking forward to the next milestone due this week... the PA. Cross your fingers for PA by August 28.

Thought that since this is August 24 it would be appropriate to post this photo. Above is a photo of my oldest son - 3 in the picture - now 6 years old with our official adoption application. It was mailed THREE years ago yesterday- August 23, 2005. Now three years later we hope to be wrapping up the end of the wait.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Wishful Thinking with the numbers.

Okay then. so there is a family about a month ahead of us who just got their TA and a consolute appointment for Sep 22. So...of course I had to do a comparison of the numbers and see where we would be estimated to go if our time line followed theirs....and this is what I have come up with.

1. We estimate our PA to come by August 28, 2008.
2. We estimate our LOA to come by September 5, 2008. This is the one that came earlier for the other family than most. All I can do is hope that ours follows their time line!
3. We estimate that our TA will come September 29, 2008.
4. We estimate our travel to be on October 29, 2008.

Thats some creative math, wishful thinking, and a boat load of IFS.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Getting some questions answered.

For those who may not know about this ( I didnt until today) there is a wonderful organization called Lady Bugs and Love. This organization is run by a couple with four adopted children from China ( currently working on a fifth) who have contacts in the country. They contact the orphanage and find out current height and weight of your child and try their best to get updated photos. They will also ask up to 10 questions and try to get you answers within 14 - 21 days. You can order a care package, send blankets, toys, nuts, a photo album of your family, and cameras.

We hope to have our 10 questions answered in a week or so.

Still getting a TON of help from audiologists, speech therapists, friends, family...incredible! I cant believe we are only going on 48 hours since this all started. We are surrounded by incredibly generous people who have been kind enough to share their time and talents with us in order to give us the most information possible in order to make the most informed decisions. We are SOOOO blessed! Hoping and praying that mary gets to come with us to China!!!! Come on TA!

More information to digest

So after a long discussion with the adoption agency, we have the following milestones:

date we sent in our offical application to adopt) 8/23/05

(log-in-date, date that the CCAA entered our dossier into their queue) 8/16/06

(date of referral, date on which we rec'd Molly's records to review) 8/20/08

(Letter of Intent, date on which we submitted our formal intent to adopt Molly) 8/21/08

(Pre-Approval, date which CCAA acknowledges our intent to adopt Molly) pending - expected to take one week from now.

(Letter of Approval, date on which the CCAA formally accepted our petition to adopt Molly) pending - expected to take two to four weeks from PA date.

(Travel Approval, date which signifies our approval to make plans to come to China) pending - expected to take four weeks for LOA date.

(Consulate Appointment, date on which Molly formally becomes the newest Barrie by the US gov't) pending - expected to take two weeks for TA date.

Estimated cost to travel there, pay our fees, hotel costs, in country travel...and all the extras... about 12,500.

Somebody start the clock!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Molly is ours!

It has been a whirlwind 24 hours. I innocently called the Adoption agency to enquire about a little girl on the waiting child list and before hanging up the phone asked our case worker if there were a lot of families looking to adopt a little girl with a hearing impairment. She told me that they had just rec'vd information on a little girl that is available and she would email it to me. So I sat there...waited for the email to hit....opened the picture and knew instantly. That was my girl. I cant explain look at kids pictures day after day, month after month, year after year, and you hear about how this happens. You hear about the "click" that people experience when they see a picture of the child that they are meant to have and there she was.

I picked up the phone to call R. and the rest of the day was a whirlwind of phone calls and IM's to my sister, Darla a speech therapist, experts in audiology and working with the Deaf, our pediatrician...and by the end of the evening...we knew what we were still afraid to say outloud. This little girls is ours. End of Story.

This process has taken us on a three year goose chase...and here is hoping that this blog is the beginning of the end of that chapter.

On to the good stuff.

So what is next. First, the official acceptance from the CCAA..which from what I am told is not a big deal at all. Then the final figure of what money we will need...that one is going to hurt....and then awaiting our Travel Authorization. We hope to have her home by Christmas 2008. Just in time for her third birthday!